SHABBONA — "About 300 people showed up Monday night at the Indian Creek
High School gym to hear from state and federal officials on a proposal
to bring a convention center and bingo hall to 128 acres of farmland.
Many residents of this rural town of about 1,000 are concerned the
business created by the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation would
significantly alter their way of life. Several said the town’s
infrastructure would not be able to keep up with the increased demand
created by the growth associated with what many say would one day
become a full-fledged casino."
"A couple of public meetings are being held this week in the
gymnasium at Indian Creek High School regarding the Prairie Band
Potawatomi's desire to build and operate a Class II gaming facility on
the 128-acre farm it purchased last year.
Monday, May 14, U.S.
Representative Dennis Hastert-R, Plano, will host an information
meeting to explain the process by which the Prairie Band Potawatomi
must undertake to obtain federal status for Reservation and/or Trust
Land. The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act will also be discussed. The
meeting starts at 6:30pm.
On Thursday, May 17, the DeKalb County
Board will conduct an informational meeting that will include a
question and answer session. That meeting begins at 7:00pm."
"Resolution #R2007-27: Prairie Band of the
Potawatomi Nation Agreement with the County of DeKalb, Illinois. For
the County of DeKalb and the Prairie Band of the Potawatomi Nation to
enter into negotiations for an agreement for future services to
facilitate the operation of a gaming facility on tribal owned lands
within DeKalb County. Committee Action: Moved by Mr. Haines, seconded
by Ms. Fauci, and it was carried, to forward this recommendation to the
full board for approval. Mr. Steimel voted no.
agenda item will be discussed at tonight's DeKalb County Board meeting
held at the Legislative Center at 200 North Main in Sycamore."
I am writing in support of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation's planned bingo and government center to be located just south of my business, The Bait Shop, 4778 East U.S. 30, Shabbona.
The community of Shabbona is based on Indian traditions, with the town, the state park, the school district and the village streets all bearing Native American names and honoring the ancestors of the Prairie Band.
I encourage the DeKalb County Board to vote yes to a wonderful opportunity being offered the community of Shabbona. It was decided more than 35 years ago that the community of Shabbona would be a recreational community with the construction and development of Shabbona Lake State Park. The community opens its doors to more than 400,000 visitors a year who help make Shabbona a vibrant community.
Now we have a second opportunity to welcome another major recreational development to our community - this one run by ancestors of those who were here before us. Thank you, Prairie Band, for offering to improve our community, and thank you, county board, for assisting them in their endeavors.
I am also the current president of the Shabbona Lake Sportsman Club. The club has been a protector of the state park since the club's inception in 1982. As president of the club, I see nothing but positive benefits from the Prairie Band becoming an active business partner in our community. The effect on the state park will be nothing but positive.
We are very fortunate that the Prairie Band is willing to invest millions of dollars in our community. That will mean jobs, lower taxes to longtime residents, and business for our local stores.
I was born and raised in DeKalb. I remember wonderful times as a member of the Chief Shabbona Council, Boy Scouts of America. Chief Shabbona was highly regarded by the troop.
Now I live in Shabbona, near Shabbona Lake and Chief Shabbona Forest Preserve. I appreciate his legacy now more than ever.
I am confused when we do not welcome the return of his descendants to our community. I hope the DeKalb County Board will be more receptive and open. This is a unique opportunity in Illinois . Let's make the most of it!